Yep, that's right, Wyoming. Land of open spaces, mountains, abundant wildlife, (mostly) clean air. The kind of place where your kids can still walk to school. The kind of place where you can see deer and antelope while driving to work (and it only takes you 10 minutes to get to work). The kind of place where you can throw your skis in the car and be on the slopes or the cross-country trails within half an hour of leaving the house.
Yeah, we've got our share of wingnuts here. I'm not happy about my Congressional representation, to be sure.
But is Senator Enzi justification for all the hatin' on Westerners I see Kossacks engaging in?
Over the past week, I've encountered at least three articles/diaries about Rocky Mountain wingnuttery. This past Sunday, mcjoan wrote about the small-state Senator problem. Yesterday, Hunter discussed Senator Enzi's corporate contributions and obstruction of health care reform. The most recent was mcjoan's article today about Idaho gubernatorial hopeful Rex Rammell's bad joke about buying Obama tags.
Now, I agree with what mcjoan and Hunter said. Mike Enzi and John Barrasso aren't serving my state's interests in the slightest; they're serving their corporate overseers. Rex Rammell's joke was in extraordinarily bad taste, and he should be taken to task for it.
My problem isn't with mcjoan and Hunter. My problem is with all too many of the comments on those three diaries. Comments such as:
Pardon me, but fucking Wyoming? ...a State that is largely areable (sic) land, cattle, and a handful of humans...
In Enzi's defense, WY has no people.
And, FWIW, my two older sons outscored the entire state of WY on the PSAT when they were in HS.
Why does Dakota get four Senators?
Small brain pool
Besides having a smaller, tighter group of political boot camps, there seems, to me at least, a dearth of intellectual curiosity from States with little population, Bernie Sanders excepted. Not only lack of curiosity, but basic intelligence doused with a large amount of myopia.
IDAHO = Inbred Doofuses Are Hunting Obama
No one lives here.
The (apparently imaginary) people who live here are stupid.
And can't multiply by two.
First off, I can state with a reasonably degree of authority that people do, in fact, actually live in the intermountain West. I'm one of them. Granted, there aren't a lot of us, and we're spread out over a vast swath of God's country. But we do exist. And I'd like to think we count for SOMETHING.
To be sure, I'm sure people in California are frustrated that Wyoming has exactly the same number of Senators as California does. Don't blame us Westerners for what the Constitution says, though. And if the likes of Enzi were championing health care reform, you probably wouldn't be mad at us. You're mad because Enzi is holding up health care reform, not because he's from Wyoming.
Second, we're NOT stupid. Many Wyomingites and other Westerners may have a misguided view of how the world works, plus a level of cognitive dissonance that is often breathtaking. Such as the rancher with a federal grazing lease who wants the guv'mint out of his business, or the sportsman/sportswoman who thinks nothing of hunting on BLM land but resents federal intrusion into his/her affairs.
But that doesn't make us stupid. We just have a different view of life than city folk do. (Case in point: mcjoan actually had to explain, for the benefit of you city slickers, what "tags" are. Any Wyomingite or Idahoan or Montanan worth his or her salt knows damn well what they are, 'cuz hunting is part of the culture here.) Oh, and we can multiply by two.
Third, we're not inbred. We do have values, and we don't marry our cousin. ;-) (Usually, anyway. And let's leave FLDS and other practitioners of plural marriage out of the discussion, 'k?)
One thing you need to realize about us intermountain West folk is that we are a proud people. We deeply resent furriners (Western for people who ain't from here, including people from the Left Coast and the East Coast) telling us what to do. One popular bumper sticker reads, "Welcome to Wyoming. We don't give a fuck how you did it back home." Don't insult us, don't dis us. We get really pissed off.
And when we get really pissed off, we dig our heels in, like a recalcitrant horse that doesn't want to be broke. I'd say that's a lot of what you're seeing with Senator Enzi. He knows that a lot of people outside Wyoming really, really hate him. So that makes him only all the more determined to stand his ground.
So back off.
And come see us sometime, 'k? We're actually pretty nice once you get to know us, and once you stop telling us what to do. And we've got some of the most awe-inspiring scenery you'll see anywhere. Plus we don't have traffic jams.